A Supportive Route to University

25th September 2023 - 27th May 2024

(Please note - while we do our very best not to change our course details, some course dates and details may be subject to change)

Register your interest with us today, and we will be in touch with you to discuss your application further:

Apply Now

In the meantime, you might want to consider studying a short (3 days, 2 nights) Subject Taster course that could help you prepare for September.  Take a look below:

 Subject Taster Courses

About our Access to Higher Education Diploma (Social Science and Health)

Our Access to Higher Education Diploma (Social Science and Health) is a great stepping-stone to university, especially if you are wanting to pursue a career in one of the following professions:

  • Nursing (Paediatric and Adult)
  • Midwifery
  • Mental Health Nursing
  • Counselling
  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Criminology

And....over the past 4 years, our Access to Higher Education Diploma pass rate has been 100%!!

Don't worry if you have not been in education for a long time, your maths, digital and/or English skills are a bit rusty or you are not sure if university is for you.  We can help!  We offer a friendly and supportive environment especially if you have come through a personal challenge, have had a bad experience with learning or have previously thought you may not be able to go into higher education.  Being a residential student gives you the chance to focus on your studies, meet new and like-minded people, it gives you an idea of what staying at university might be like and most importantly - it allows you the freedom to concentrate on achieving the future you want to have.  Find out what residential learning at Fircroft is like here.


This course could be FREE to you depending on your financial circumstances, including accommodation, meals and learning resources.  We also have bursaries available. 

All course fees, free courses and bursaries are subject to specific eligibility criteria.  Please email the Admissions team on [email protected] or telephone them on 0121 472 0116 for further information.

How the Diploma is taught

This is a full-time course.  Students are encouraged to be residential at the college throughout the course but there are a limited number of non-residential places available. The Diploma is delivered as a blend of classroom, online and independent study.  The main learning will be up to 3 days each week at college and the rest of the week can be used for assignments, research, independent study and catching up with your fellow students! 

As this is an intensive course, we are not closed for some national public holidays although we close for up to 2 weeks for Christmas and the Easter Bank Holiday weekend.


Level 3

What you will study

As well as maths, English and digital skills, you will study a range of subject areas including:

  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Study Skills
  • Health Sciences


Our Access to Higher Education (Social Science and Health) Diploma is accredited by Open College Network West Midlands and is widely recognised by universities in England and Wales.

Support Offered

Support and guidance is available to our students when needed to ensure they achieve the aims and objectives of their course as well as having an enjoyable learning experience.  We are a social justice college which means we welcome people from all walks of life who are able to study independently with us.  We celebrate diversity and strive to ensure all of our students have an inclusive learning experience.  Find out more about us here.

Take a look at what our Access to Higher Education (Social Science and Humanities) Diploma students 2019/2020, Jack and Hannah, thought about their learning experience at Fircroft before they left to go to university:

"Coming to Fircroft has 100% changed my life for the better.  It has given me confidence in myself and in my abilities.  Coming to the college has given me hope for the future and I am not stuck in the rut I was in" 

 - Hannah, an Access to Higher Education (Social Science and Humanities) Diploma student 2019/2020) (now at university)

Entry Requirements

You will need access to a computer, speakers, internet and camera.  If this is going to be difficult for you, please speak to the Admissions team.

If you do not have a level 2 literacy and level 1 numeracy qualification from within the last 5 years we will ask you to take a Literacy and numeracy assessment. If you show that you are able to reach the skills level in these areas, you will then be invited to attend an interview.

You must be aged 19 or older by August 31st 2023 (this is a college requirement).

If you are unsure about how to apply online, please take a look at this helpful guide.

If you are still unsure about how to apply please telephone our Admissions team on 0121 472 0116 or email [email protected]

Access Numeracy Assessment 

If you would like to speak to someone about the Access to Higher Education Diplomas please telephone 0121 472 0116 between 9.00 am and 5.00 pm Monday - Friday.